Roughly a year ago, deep-pocketed Global Infrastructure Partners replaced downsizing NRG Energy (NYSE: NRG) as Clearway Energy’s (NYSE: CWEN) primary owner and sponsor. We immediately added the yieldco to our Aggressive Holdings, anticipating faster cash flow and dividend growth.
Over the past 15 years, Conservative Holding Pembina Pipeline Corp (TSX: PPL, NYSE: PBA) has endured two wholesale depressions in Alberta’s energy patch—and the Canadian government’s death sentence on its former income trust structure.
A record two-dozen CUI Portfolio companies currently trade above my recommended entry points. That’s to be expected in an environment where investors are seeking safety and yield. And utility stocks offer the added bonus of earning most or all revenue in the US while realizing strong, reliable earnings growth from renewable energy, 5-G and other transforming technologies.
Just because someone is offering doesn’t necessarily mean anyone will buy. That’s the hard lesson for shareholders of retail energy marketer Just Energy Group (TSX: JE, NYSE: JE). The stock has lost nearly -70 percent of its value since management announced a “strategic review” due to “outside interest” in early June.
From the time Thomas Edison threw the first switch and Alexander Graham Bell completed the first phone call, essential services companies have been on a relentless quest for scale. And since such businesses rarely fail, the primary method has been mergers and acquisitions.
US/China trade turmoil, rising political tensions in Hong Kong and erratic Australian regulation have driven down shares of CLP Holdings (Hong Kong: 2, OTC: CLPHY) below our buy target of USD11. Now’s the time to pick up shares of this Aggressive Holding.
In summer 2013, Exelon Corp (NYSE: EXC) cut its quarterly payout from 52.5 cents to 31 cents per share. The 41 percent reduction was a tacit admission that no US carbon tax would save the nation’s largest nuclear power fleet from falling wholesale electricity prices.
When this issue went to post, not every company in our Utility Report Card coverage universe or model portfolios had released its second quarter numbers. But there’s enough available information to discern several key takeaways.
First, even in these essential service businesses, there’s evidence the US economy has lost some steam. One place that’s shown up is industrial sales of the country’s largest electric utilities.
UK-based integrated energy company Centrica Plc (London: CNA, OTC: CPYYY) will cut its semi-annual dividend payable in November to GBP1.50 per share, from the year ago rate of GBP3.60. Management also announced a reduction in the “Final” dividend to be declared in February from GBP8.40 to GBP3.50 per share.
How low can interest rates go? The answer likely depends on how much the US economy slows in coming months and how aggressively the Federal Reserve responds. The benchmark 10-year Treasury note yield still hasn’t fallen as far as it did in summer 2016, or even in July 2012 when Washington was playing chicken with the possibility of a first ever US government default.
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Roger's current take and vital statistics on more than 200 essential-services stocks.